Calgary Bicycle Festival and ‘Ride the Road’ Tour Sunday June 6, 2010

Provided by MorePeopleCycling.ca

The tragedy in Rougemont, Quebec on May 14, 2010, highlights the vulnerability of cyclists and athletes who use the roads as an integral component of their fitness and training regimes. In many jurisdictions around the world, safety statistics for cyclists have demonstrated substantial improvement with an increase in urban commuter cycling.  With more bicycles on the road, drivers will exhibit a greater sense of awareness for sharing the road with commuters who travel without a shell of protective steel and plastic. The single greatest impetus for increasing bicycle mode share is the work of an effective cycling promotion organization.

About Us

The Calgary tour de nuit Society (CtdnS) was formed by a small group of bicycle commuters who met at a City of Calgary Transportation Committee meeting. The commuters came to the conclusion that bicycle commuting was not being actively addressed in the city’s transportation plan. These cyclists secured sponsorship from Calgary lawyers (Field Law LLP) and incorporated a non-profit active and sustainable transportation organization to encourage ‘more people cycling more often’.

The first task was to prove that public support in Calgary exists for commuter cycling and that municipal investments in commuter cycling infrastructure has positive environmental gains while demonstrating fiscal prudence. Calgary was also the only major Canadian city that had not hosted any public events to promote cycling. Noting the extraordinary success of ‘community-based social marketing’ techniques in Melbourne, Australia, which have raised bicycle transportation mode share up 10 per cent, the Calgary tour de nuit Society introduced the ‘Ride the Road’ tour.

‘Ride the Road’ tour

Last year, the tour was a 12 km closed-road, on-street circuit around downtown and through the Stampede grounds; a rolling closure was provided by Calgary Police Services to allow participants to ride in complete safety down city streets. The ride was designed to allow participants the sensation of cycling on streets found in Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Portland. The Calgary tour de nuit Society is the only transportation cycling member of the Alberta Bicycle Association (ABA), which endorsed the ‘Ride the Road’ tour. After the success of last year’s event, the CtdnS board promptly joined the Alberta Triathlon Association (ATA) to secure its sponsorship for the 2010 ‘Ride the Road’ tour.

This year for the ‘Ride the Road’ tour, the City of Calgary and the CtdnS have agreed to a ‘hub and spoke’ model inspired by the ‘Skyride’ in London, England. With the introduction of a ‘spoke’ ride (starting at Tuxedo Park) down Centre Street to Stanley Park (where the main ‘hub’ route will commence), the ‘Ride the Road’ tour is now a two-for-one event and double last year’s distance-up at 25 km.

Pump up your tires Calgary!

On Sunday, June 6, 2010 you can join hundreds of Calgarians to support the need for active and sustainable transportation by participating in the tour at the Calgary Bicycle Festival. Join us for a day of family-friendly activities, healthy and sustainable living, free festival entertainment, and to help the CtdnS promote ‘more people cycling more often’. Register or volunteer here.

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2 Responses to “Calgary Bicycle Festival and ‘Ride the Road’ Tour Sunday June 6, 2010”

  1. Beth Tingle Says:

    Hello,

    I am writing to you about a park enhancement project that the Shaganappi Community Association has been working on for the last 6 years. We are hoping to improve the off-leash dog park immediately adjacent to Crowchild Trail just south of downtown. Many cyclists commute to work everyday by going through this park. Because of the proximity of Crowchild Trail, the sound and visual of the cars really detracts from the experience of the park; it often feels more like a boulevard rather than the 6-acre inner-city park it is.

    With the West LRT project underway, the City has agreed to donate as much dirt as we need for a sound berm along Crowchild Trail. However, it is up to the community to raise the money required for the labour to turn this dirt into a berm. We are curently fund-raising to be able to do this. The community has already raised $56,000.

    We are scrambling to finish an application to a provincial grant program (due June 30th) that would match the money the community has raised, as well as the value of the donated materials and labour that have already gone into the project. One of the application requirements is letters of support from community organizations that believe the project would be a benefit to many individuals. Undoubtedly, this project would improve a cyclist’s commute as the park would offer better views and simply feel more like a park. Is this something Bike Alberta would be willing to do? I don’t think the letter would need to be long. This could really help our chances with this grant process. The City requires that most of the funding be in place or they will not give us permision to stockpile the dirt. We would hate for this opportunity to pass by as we feel that a sound berm would make this park so much more enjoyable for dog-walkers, cyclists, and residents alike.

    It may be easier to talk about this on the phone. Please e-mail me and I can give you my contact information to discuss this further if you think this is a projct Bike Alberta could support.

    Thanks so much,

    Beth

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